The Daily Life of Johan

29/10/2015 by Morgan Carlsson


Johan is impressed, picky and ends up in the shadows.

”We are having a test in Höljes Monday-Tuesday-Wednesday next week. We keep on trying to develop, step by step, bit by bit. If you are working with good people you can always find improvement.”

But there’s a real break before the epilogue in Argentine och some time to sum up the rallycross season. What do you say about the championship in general?

”The competition at the top has grown. If you look at the lap times there are more fast drivers than I thought there would be. At the same time I have nothing to complain about. We are number three in the World Championship, thanks to keeping  away from real plunges, and we couldn’t have hoped for more.”

What do you think about the events around the world?

”The quality of the tracks has varied. Some organiser have been unlucky with the weather but I don’t like when conditions change a lot from the first heat to the last. Ok, I have been fortunate with that some times as well, but I still don’t like it. I think IMG has done well with the whole concept. The only thing I don’t like is the drawing ahead of the first heat. I think you should use the last outing of the training session to decice the starting order.”

Next year’s calendar is now official. Italy is gone but it’s another three years for Höljes.

”Dropping Italy was a pity, I think, but it’s nice to have the home contest in Sweden. Good for rallycross and for IMG. ’The Magic Weekend is really something special. On top of that Höljes is one of the best tracks and the most fair conditions.”

You are quite a new team in the World Championship and you have probably developed your routines in and around the paddock during the season.

”Above all, we have learnt how to read the tracks on a visual basis and foresee how to set the car up according to that.”

So it’s not just a relaxing walk that you take when you arrive at the circuit?

No, it’s not just about me finding out where to turn, but also to find out what set up we should use. For example, in France we realized that the track would become quicker and quicker during the weekend so we didn’t optimize the car for the first few laps. We have also realized that it’s not only about finding the fastest lap times but the whole package, with quick starts and so on to get ideal preconditions for each and every race.”

You seem to be co-operating well with the core of your team.

”I’m incredibly satisfied with my mechanics. They are really, really, really good. They are working extremely hard to foresee all the problems that can arise, looking for crackings, registering how many kilometers a diff has been used and so on. Sure, you can conclude early in the evening that a car is ready for start and go and take a shower, eat and chat. But you can also work the whole night to avoid wreckages. I think my team mates have been very good at maintenance, keeping my car in a very good shape. I can be very picky about details. The wheel must be in an exakt position, the accelerator wire must not seize and the seat belts must be in perfect order, and so on. Luckily Olle and Andreas are just like me. As is my engineer Per as well: the gear cut must function perfectly.” 

How have you developed as a driver during the year?

”There are things that I try to develop all the time. I think I’m quite good at studying my competitors, learning from them. It is quite obvious that the drivers are good at different things. I try to find a way to carry out the qualification and another strategy for the semifinals when it’s all about position in the race. Then it’s up to me to decide when to take risks. I’m quite safe in my driving, not very hazardous.”

You spent the weekend at home and had some time to enjoy the rally success for you team mates in Even Management.

”Actually, I followed that quite closely. Pontus did exactly what he should. Taking the initiative already the first day and then just controlling the race. Andreas impressed me. Of course, the victory came easily to him when Ogier crashed but he had to beat Latvala in what looked like a tough fight for second place. Ole Christian as well did a good job when he won seven stages. It was a strong Even weekend. Luckily for me I didn’t compete, because I would have been in the shadows of the others, ha- ha.”

But you made a trip to Falun.

”I went with Emil, to help him fetch a snow scooter, so I would like to try that one during the winter. Ole Christian also has one, as well as Tord, so I think we need to have a team championship. I don’t think my father will join us. He injured his spleen when he was fifteen, in a scooter accident, and was close to death. It was not until four years ago that he dared to try again. Then he ended up in a ditch and injured his knee. You can say that him and the scooter are two types that won’t match, like orange juice and tooth paste, ha-ha.”





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